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The Official Journal of the Generalitat Valenciana has published a resolution on behalf of the Ministry of Infrastructure, Planning and Environment, which protects part of the land at Cala Mosca.

After a long battle against the development of the last green area of the Orihuela Costa, the Cala Mosca area plays home to two endangered species. There are around 5,000 specimens of the Cabeza de Gato plant, also known as the “cat head”, as well as a snail known as Tudorella Mauritanica. Because of the status of these endangered elements, the construction of 1,500 homes would have caused considerable environmental damage, and is therefore blocked on the two sites, “due to the presence of a significant population of Cabeza de Gato, a protected plant under the category of Vulnerable in the Spanish Catalogue of Endangered Species and the Valencian catalogue of Endangered Species of Flora”.

However, the decision does not offer anywhere near enough protection of the land, not does is provide any need for the promoter to reduce the number of homes they can build on the area, in fact the 1,500 properties can still be constructed, but may well now have to be built higher than first expected, thus blocking the view and spoiling the visibility of the coastline than was ever first planned.

Whilst applauding the decision to provide some protection so far, the councillor for the environment, Manuel Gallud of the Los Verdes green party of Orihuela, has already announced an appeal, as the government team believe that just protecting those two plots “is not enough to fully protect the endangered species”.

Similarly, the C.L.A.R.O. group, who have lead the campaign for protection as far as the European Union, initially welcomed this statement and recalled their activities to end the coastal construction, then realising the reality of the ruling, and are now appalled and note with “astonishment and disbelief”, that the Government Order does not cover anywhere near the range and natural expansion where the largest population of the protected species cited above live.

The approved and protected area follows the demarcation of the maritime public domain line and does not cover the two main areas of concern. C.L.A.R.O. considers this a “remarkable CONTRADICTION” in the declaration of protection and will be a “mortal blow to the population of the cat’s head jarilla” since they will “not enjoy the same degree of protection” as the coastline, which is hardly used by the plant population, whose home will be converted into play areas for children and part of the urban landscape.

Bob Houliston from C.L.A.R.O. will be talking to Mark Nolan on Exite Radio just after 10:00 on Monday. Tune your radio to 93.1fm, or listen via the internet at www.exiteradio.com, to hear his views on this subject and many more.

Filed under: http://www.theleader.info/article/45391/

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